NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) 20050196554: Laser High-Cycle Thermal Fatigue of Pulse Detonation Engine Combustor Materials Tested
Publication date 2001-03-01
Topics NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS), PULSE DETONATION ENGINES, HIGH TEMPERATURE GASES, CARBON DIOXIDE LASERS, ENGINE TESTS, GAS TURBINE ENGINES, THERMODYNAMIC CYCLES, THERMAL FATIGUE, MATHEMATICAL MODELS, TEMPERATURE DISTRIBUTION, SPATIAL DISTRIBUTION, Zhu, Dong-Ming, Fox, Dennis S., Miller, Robert A.,
Pulse detonation engines (PDE's) have received increasing attention for future aerospace propulsion applications. Because the PDE is designed for a high-frequency, intermittent detonation combustion process, extremely high gas temperatures and pressures can be realized under the nearly constant-volume combustion environment. The PDE's can potentially achieve higher thermodynamic cycle efficiency and thrust density in comparison to traditional constant-pressure combustion gas turbine engines (ref. 1). However, the development of these engines requires robust design of the engine components that must endure harsh detonation environments. In particular, the detonation combustor chamber, which is designed to sustain and confine the detonation combustion process, will experience high pressure and temperature pulses with very short durations (refs. 2 and 3). Therefore, it is of great importance to evaluate PDE combustor materials and components under simulated engine temperatures and stress conditions in the laboratory. In this study, a high-cycle thermal fatigue test rig was established at the NASA Glenn Research Center using a 1.5-kW CO2 laser. The high-power laser, operating in the pulsed mode, can be controlled at various pulse energy levels and waveform distributions. The enhanced laser pulses can be used to mimic the time-dependent temperature and pressure waves encountered in a pulsed detonation engine. Under the enhanced laser pulse condition, a maximum 7.5-kW peak power with a duration of approximately 0.1 to 0.2 msec (a spike) can be achieved, followed by a plateau region that has about one-fifth of the maximum power level with several milliseconds duration. The laser thermal fatigue rig has also been developed to adopt flat and rotating tubular specimen configurations for the simulated engine tests. More sophisticated laser optic systems can be used to simulate the spatial distributions of the temperature and shock waves in the engine. Pulse laser high-cycle thermal fatigue behavior has been investigated on a flat Haynes 188 alloy specimen, under the test condition of 30-Hz cycle frequency (33-msec pulse period and 10-msec pulse width including a 0.2-msec pulse spike; ref. 4). Temperature distributions were calculated with one-dimensional finite difference models. The calculations show that that the 0.2-msec pulse spike can cause an additional 40 C temperature fluctuation with an interaction depth of 0.08 mm near the specimen surface region. This temperature swing will be superimposed onto the temperature swing of 80 C that is induced by the 10-msec laser pulse near the 0.53-mm-deep surface interaction region.
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